Here is what you need to know on Thursday, October 15:
Markets are edging lower and the safe-haven dollar is somewhat bid as US fiscal stimulus talks are stuck as the clock ticks down toward the elections. Brexit and rising coronavirus cases are high on the EU Summit agenda, ahead of US jobless claims and other figures.
US fiscal stimulus talks are going nowhere fast. Less than three weeks ahead of the elections, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin seems frustrated by the lack of progress. He was one of the proponents of negotiating a large relief package, contrary to Senate Republicans, which are focused on the Supreme Court. Democrats are in pole position in opinion polls ahead of the November 3 vote and seem reluctant to give President Donald Trump a political victory.
Elections: Both the incumbent and challenger Joe Biden will hold separate televised town-halls late in the day. Models show a near 90% of a Biden win, while the Senate is a toss-up. Markets currently prefer a clean Democratic sweep that would facilitate vast fiscal spending.
US jobless claims are set to resume their falls and head toward 800,000. The Philly Fed Manufacturing Index is set to remain in positive territory.
Brexit: GBP/USD advanced above 1.30 after the UK refrained from abandoning talks. However, EU leaders are set to hear that no progress was made in recent talks about future relations between Brussels and London.
Eurozone coronavirus cases are on the rise, prompting additional restrictions across the old continent. Most notably, France imposed a nighttime curfew in Paris and other cities. German officials warned that new measures are coming following a surge in infections.
Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, will speak later in the day. The increase in COVID-19 cases could trigger dovish comments and readiness to do more.
AUD/USD has dropped significantly after Phillip Lowe, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, said he could cut rates to 0.1% and leave rates at lower levels for longer. The RBA's dovish stance outweighed a better-than-expected jobs report from Australia, where the Unemployment Rate remained below 7%.
Gold has been struggling around $1,900 following the lack of progress in stimulus talks while WTI oil is stable at around $41.
Cryptocurrencies have been consolidating their recent gains, with Bitcoin holding around $11,300.
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